Receiving comfort from Georgia Heard, Janet Wong & Ecclesiasties

Language is a sweet  ponderable. I am living the idea in these current days that receiving comfort is not the same as being comfortable.

I find this to be true in the poem by Janet Wong, “The Ones They Loved the Most” found in her collection NIGHT GARDEN.

And I find this to be true in the poems of THIS PLACE I KNOW, Poems of Comfort, selected by Georgia Heard to comfort children who witnessed the World Trade Center tragedy and later, the soothing words becam bound and illustrated for a beautiful book.

Recently my dear sister through marriage, Angela, read in church from the sage poem of Ecclesiastes. And yes,   “To every thing there is a season. . . ” always catches my breath, the idea that all the emotions, all the highs and lows have a place. This gentle chanting, familiar regularly at  Bible lessons from kindergarden age through age thirteen. I knew I would take comfort from the line “. . . a time to live and a time to die . . .” and althoughI I needed to hear this line of Chapter Three, I felt at that moment & still feel at unexpected reminders, forlorn.

I agree deeply with Georgia Heard as she shares in  her book that, “Poetry has always offered comfort and consolation during sorrowful times, and reminded us of the places in our lives, inside and out, that can help us heal.” If you are comfortable now, but in wisdom know that some day you will need comfort, perhaps you keep handy comfort-giver poems:

-Ch. three, Ecclesiastes.

-I KNOW THIS PLACE, Poems of Comfort.

Lines in this touchingly illustrated book such as from –

“Stars” by Deborah Chandra: “I like the way they looked down from the sky                                                                /And didn’t seem to mind the way I cried.”

 

-lines from “Trouble, Fly” by Susan Marie Swanson:

“Trouble, fly.

                                                                                             Let our night

                                                                                             be a night of peace.”

 

– lines from “Holes” by Lillian Morrison:

-“Strangest of gaps

                                                                        their goneness 

. . .

                                                                        the hole is inside us

                                                                        it brims over

                                                                        is empty and full at once.”

Lillian Morrison

Christmas, Dad Annino & Jan Godown Annino, Ormond Beach

Dad Annino is missed every day, in oh so many ways. Because my hubby’s parents have long selected winters in Florida rather the cold blanketing New England shores where more of our family lives, most of our Thanksgiving, Christmas and Easter festivities, meals, prayer ceremonies, have centered on them, for at least 27 years.

Easter was a special Dad Annino holiday. He collected as many of the palm leaves handed out at church he could hold, to later sit outside in the sunshine near the lemon and kumquat trees and fold them in beautiful ways for gifts. Always always always his intricate folds included a sacred shape he learned in his child days on the island of Sicily. Although our opinions sat firm on “different sides of the olive grove wall” on many topics,  I loved him with a fierceness that at first surprised me and then I accepted, not trying to puzzle it out.

Although he, Mom Annino and my hubby, with me, were all in Florida, the stretch of our state is such that it was an eight-to-ten-hour round trip to be with them depending upon holiday traffic.

In between visits, in more recent years I began warbling to Dad Annino over the telephone and lucked into finding that each time, I had picked a song he recognized and loved it that he either sang or hummed along with me. 

Twenty-seven years ago when I was the family’s new Mom, Dad Annino told me a story.  In a small Sicilian village a mother of many children woke up early in the morning to a ruckus among kids in her home. Ignoring the bickering, she got up, calmly washed, dressed and set about to make herself a cup of coffee. Only after she had sat as long as she wanted, clean, fresh, ready for the day, supping the sacred morning cafe and enjoying her morning pastry, did she tend to the squabbling children. “You see, la Mama must take care of  herself, first, before she can take chare of la bambina,” he said, wrapping me up in a story hug. Good-bye, sweet good bye to Dad Annino, but to paraphrase St. Matthew, I will feel you with me, always, even unto my end.

 

More poem comfort-

lines from Janet Wong’s “The Ones They Loved the Most”

-“My mother says

                                                                                                        the spirits of the dead

                                                                                                        visit

                                                                                                        in dreams

                                                                                                        seeking out

                                                                                                        the ones they loved

                                                                                                        the most.”

                                                                                 

Folded palm leaves by Dad Annino

                                                                                                          

Finally, if any of this appears garbled or out of place, please know I have a funny story about my laptop traveling to Kentucky, yet I never have. I’m temporarily working on my mobile phone, praise be to it. – jga

    

 

 

 

Summer shorts

SUMMER SHORTS

Today’s Poetry Friday hoopla is parked at A WORD EDGEWISE, the creation of Poetry Friday public school teaching librarian-poet, Linda Mitchell.

~~~~

Logbook*/ Recently I learned from artist/author John Hendrix to create a logbook.

Heart map/ In winter I learned from artist/author Georgia Heard to create heart maps.

Novel/ Recently I sent to an esteemed big city book editor, my first verse novel, completing a promise I made in 2015 to a man now my dear friend, to memorialize his year-long Holocaust escape as a 6-year-old Jewish boy,  often hiding in plain view from Nazi soldiers. It is 44 poems on 50 pages, for Middle Grade. From this work:

“funny black hat Un nouveau beret!/ messy charcoal stick Entre un artiste!/ really really really stomp on grapes? Oui! Fouler les raisins!” c.JanGodownAnnino

Poem swap/ Recently I created a poem “The Glory Season” inspired by reading Thomas Lux (thanks to writing partner M.R. Street/TurtleCovePress) to send out as part of author/poet/educator Tabatha Yeatt’s  organized joy called Summer Poetry Swap. My first time on this picnic!

Young Authors  In recent weeks (enough with the recently already!) I was honored to be an invited teaching author at a local school’s Young Authors Conference. It is guided by debut author of DHALIA in BLOOM Susan Koehler, who is on the right.

Debut author Susan Koehler (far right.) Yellow pants on the left is me.

Appreciations for your time reading here, your comments & for the everlasting joy, nourishment & love that is Poetry Friday.     Happy Summer!

c. 2019JanGodownAnnino

Book winner, international women, climate change

 

Hello dear readers. It’s Poetry Friday, collected by My Juicy Little Universe

to consider climate change, posts I am eager to read.

 

First –  on Friday, March 15, the winner of a charming picture book,

BOOM! BELLOW! BLEAT! by Georgia Heard and Aaron DeWitte,

from Boyds Mills Press

is announced here.

 

Today I’m celebrating international women, a potent theme

collected last Friday here.

Two women I want to celebrate

Betty Mae Tiger Jumper, of Florida and Jennifer Worth of England.

Both were book authors and both were nurses. I am intrigued with each of their stories,

encapsulated here today.

 

[Important – if you know a fantastic book for any age student which illuminates

the path of a girl or woman whose legacy deserves wide attention,

will you please consider nominating it for honors of ALA’s Amelia Bloomer List (March-October nomination period 2019.]   Thank you! 

 

Betty Mae Tiger Jumper

 Think of a gigantic place near the end of land

A mamma alligator floats babies on her back

And itchy black bear takes a palm tree scratch

Leaving soft fur tufts for mice to fetch

©2010 all rightsreserved

-Jan Godown Annino

I came to know Betty Mae Tiger Jumper after our first conversation at a Florida festival.

Eventually with her agreement, I wrote a book for young readers about her, She Sang Promise.

Raised outdoors in the late 1920s/early 1930s, she helped her midwife mother and grandmother deliver babies in South Florida – when still a child. A teenager on her first day of kindergarten, she couldn’t read or write English. This path-setting nurse, newspaper editor, author and legendary storyteller’s many honors include her traditional singing recorded on two Smithsonian music CDs. She served a U.S. President on an advisory committee. In 1967, she was the first woman elected a leader of the Seminole Tribe of Florida.  And, she also wrestled alligators.

The international? A fascinating aspect of federal and tribal relations involves the fact that federally recognized tribes, such as the Seminole Tribe of Florida, are considered sovereign nations.

Jennifer Worth

Wind your way through the dockland, stenchland, fight land

Bandage the sad hand, worn hand, burned hand

Lift up the glad hand, smile hand, tiny hand

©2019 all rights reserved

-Jan Godown Annino

 

I came to know Jennifer Worth through a recent need to escape temporary

small miseries now past (loss of dear old pet, a despised nasty molar pulled.)

I found her through Call The Midwife, her first book,

also the name of the BBC series about her.

 

Jennifer Worth was a financially secure young woman who chose to study

how to deliver babies for impoverished families. In the 1950s she selected

wretched areas in the East End of London for her work. Her careful telling

of poignant stories about the bravery of women and older children living in

near-scavenger conditions is a movie series from her three nonfiction books.

 

 

Writing Room

For some bit of time this season, this will be one of very few posts here, as I pull back from social media  & its affiliates to focus on writing projects.

I will miss this community in-between-time  & look forward to more connectivity later. And there is always email, snail mail, the phone & perhaps we will bump into each other at an event. I hope so.

Book birthday! BOOM! BELLOW! BLEAT!

I’m so chortling to introduce a new picture book from poet Georgia Heard & artist Aaron DeWitt!

Please head over to my post about this inventive & interactive chorus of communication where I occasionally appear –  at Group Blog/Grog – a creative community established by school media wizard Todd Burleson. Comment there to win a copy of this new fun title.

March 8 Poetry Friday at Bookseedstudio

Hello kind readers –  Poetry Friday is here.

This short link goes to

*my sad cat post* this week – a short short original poem, there.

I also have a short link to

*my happy book post* this week, on another blog, with a give-away.

Please visit/comment over there – poet Georgia Heard involved!

Next week I expect to be back with

an International Women’s Day celebration,

so fabulous.

All heart

Poetry Friday for Feb. 8 is hosted by the wonderful Laura Purdie Salas!

All heart

I like the idea that a shape loved all over our world,

the heart,

first came to people in Nature’s creations, such as fruit and leaves.

 

                       Forest Heart

Drift gift from above

paper heart glows like sun

gilds the path

©JanGodownAnnino

Forest Heart c. JanGodownAnnino
allrightsreserved

 

A few days after this New Year 2019, in wetlands woods of a nearby Florida park,

a leaf fell through air just ahead of us.

The wind sent other paper-thin treasures aflutter from towering trees to join leaf litter

on the old forest’s floor. But this emissary glowed in the gray and brown setting.

When we reached the spot where it lay, my urge was to pick it up.

I looked, looked, looked.

I left the heart,  in hopes it could charm someone else on the path.

 

                         Breakfast Heart

Rise to greet the twenty-four

clay mug cradles gingered tea

knitted love cushions potter’s heart

©JanGodownAnnino

Heart Mug/ Anna Annino
Knitted Heart/ Laurel LaPorte-Grimes c.allrightsreserved

 

When my husband and I tip up our mugs, a wee heart peeks out from the base.

Each handle is half of a heart too, an additional spark of love when we examined

our gifts, created by our daughter far away at college.

To begin work, I set down this mug of love, resting it on a knitted heart

created by Laurel, our longtime dear pal of Florida, gone to Connecticut.

(miss you, Anna & Laurel!)

 

(Are you sticking to the west world  syllable guide of 5-7-5 for haiku? As you can see from above, not me!)

 

Heart map

Poet Georgia Heard creates a way into authentic writing with HEART MAPS.

February feels like a copacetic month for entry into the wisdom &

magic of heart mapping.

I’m a beginner (have just one, which I must share with the intendeds, before here.)

Georgia Heard’s  blog, with wonderful links, on heart mapping

 

Heart Letters

 

A great modern classic- I hope you’ve read it – is LOVE LETTERS by Arnold Adoff with

illustrations from Lisa Desimini, my friend.  I have previously written a valentine to this

picture book, here.

And I always love to share the love these two creators lavish on children

with these fun love poems for school-age readers & their teachers & families.

Not. To. Miss.

 

Heart loss

Below, links to three of a seashore full of tributes about love of the work of poet Mary

Oliver who passed on in January. I’ve taken to some of her poems,

but in reading just a bit about her after her death

(in Florida, where she had spent her last years)

I understand I want to catch up in study of her life story and poetry path.

I love this,

from her essay “Wordsworth’s Mountain.”

“But dawn—dawn is a gift. Much is revealed about a person by his or her passion, or indifference, to this opening of the door of day. No one who loves dawn, and is abroad to see it, could be a stranger to me.” – Mary Oliver

https://www.theparisreview.org/blog/2019/01/17/passing-mary-oliver-at-dawn/

https://maclibrary.wordpress.com/2019/01/17/poetry-friday-rip-mary-oliver/

https://www.nytimes.com/2019/01/17/books/mary-oliver-grief.html 

Appreciations for links to your Mary Oliver post in comments, or that of recommended

ones you saw out & about.

 

And of course, other thoughts, including of this ♥ season, are so welcome.

Head’s Up!

I expect to be here Friday Feb. 22 with a give-away of

the brand-newest from creative team

Rebecca Kai Dotlich & Florida’s own Fred Koehler. Hope you don’t miss this!

[ Friday Feb. 8 edit – The comment box is missing below. I have placed several questions out there

with WordPress forums & etc. Please follow on over to twitter with your comment, if you are comfortable

with that. Many thanks!